Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Much more news than when I was young

Growing up, my father took the Sunday New York Times, just for the magazine. The paper didn't arrive until Thursday, so the news was out of date, but the crossword was still one of the best crosswords in the US, and my father enjoyed solving it (with the help of some relatives). We also took a local morning and evening newspaper. Of course, when I was born, most people got their news from the CBS or NBC television network every night. It was on twice, early evening and late evening. Most Americans got the latest news from whichever of the two networks they preferred (I never noticed much difference) and the details in the morning and evening newspapers that had to be local (since the newsboys had to walk, bike, or drive the newspaper to your door, and newspapers from other places wouldn't arrive for four days). The newspapers were all independent, so there were lots of jobs for reporters, jobs that didn't pay much, but it was easy to find a job. And one could find newspapers intended just for Polish Republicans or just for Italian Democrats. There were newspapers whose business model was 'first with the facts' and newspapers with a business model 'tell the people what they want to see' or the business model 'tell them what I want them to think'. So, if one lived in a big city, one might be able to find a 'first with the facts' newspaper. No more.

Today, fewer than 7 huge conglomerates own all the major news outlets in the US. Almost all city newspapers are owned by one of the conglomerates, and the big national newspapers like the New York Times can be remotely printed and delivered to your doorstep the same day it gets delivered in New York city. So there are very few newspaper jobs, they pay better, but everyone must toe the owners' line if they want to keep their job. Facts are never allowed unless they fit the 'tell the people what they want to read' business model. The 'first with the facts' business model doesn't get enough clicks to be profitable.

However.

Back in the day, we read what a great thing the US was doing for Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Yugoslavia, Libya, & etc, rescuing those people from a brutal dictator and drug smuggler who kept the nation mired in abject poverty and giving them a democratic, free, peaceful and prosperous paradise. No one dared contradict that story.

However.

Back in the day, my father had a golfing buddy who was a ham, and he offered to let my mother call my grandmother. He put a lot of time and money into being a ham, with an antenna that he'd somehow managed to attach to the tops of all the trees in his yard, meters long so it would pick up the short wave signals. My mother took me to his place so I could say 'Hello,' to my grandmother. One time when we were there, the ham told me he could listen to the Soviet propaganda channel and hear what they said about the US.

'What do they say?' I asked.

My mother immediately said, 'We're only here to call your grandmother and leave. We don't have time for anything else,' and that was that.

Getting a short wave in the US is expensive and difficult, and I never managed it, but I did want to hear what the Soviets said about the US. I never will, of course, because the Soviets have been gone for 30 years.

But the Internet and satellite TV mean I can hear the official Chinese, Russian, Persian, Qatari, French, and British propaganda channels, in English, without getting a ham license (the official US propaganda channels are all in the languages of the people living in brutal dictatorships* who can't get the 'truth' from their own nation's TV or newspapers).

And the other nations' propaganda channels often have video that contradicts the story in the US news outlets. But every decent American (and the decent members of NATO) will tell you never to believe those channels, even if they have solid proof. Decent folks always accept the official American version without question.

*Brutal dictatorships - governments that do not do exactly what the US Deep State wants them to do

Monday, December 2, 2019

Impeachment

It now appears certain that Trump will be the 3rd US president to be impeached. The Democrats plan to impeach before Christmas as their Christmas present to themselves and all the other #NeverTrumps. But why?

Career civil servants have said that serving under Reagan, both Bushes, Clinton and Obama was about the same, but Trump is completely different. One might have erroneously believed that there was a huge golf between Reagan & the Bushes on one side and Clinton and Obama on the other.

The US is doing the exact same things under Trump as it did under Reagan, both Bushes, Clinton, and Obama, but, where they all read the speeches they were given, Trump tweets copious covfefe.

Obama, Deporter-in-Chief, who deported more Hispanics than any other president said repeatedly, 'We must treat Hispanics with dignity and respect, and I am only ordering the deportation of those convicted of the most heinous, violent crimes.' Obama lied about that. Trump did two things: he promised to build an impregnable wall to keep any new Hispanics out of the US and to deport all those already in the US without papers, and he pointed out that Obama and Clinton lied when they gave their great speeches about treating Hispanics with dignity and respect, Bill and Obama both worked as hard as they could to get rid of Hispanics. Bill didn't deport as many as Obama, but he had many more Hispanics 'removed' than Obama deported. A 'removal' means there's no trial and a judge to order a legal deportation, just put them on a plane leaving the US. And when Hispanics checked and found out Trump was telling the truth, those who had raced to the polls to vote for Bill Clinton and Obama stayed home, since it wouldn't really matter whom they voted for. But still, many believe Obama. I've read Trumpeters convinced that Obama didn't deport a single Hispanic (in spite of the Federal records--it wasn't in the establishment media at all, they lied that Obama was telling the truth, but the Federal records have the number of deportations going back 50 years, and Obama is by far on top). Many Trumpeters believe the lie that Obama not only didn't deport a single Hispanic, he gave them all multiple voter ID cards and said they could stay as long as they voted Democrat early and often.

The same is true of climate change. The US desperately needs to do all it can to reduce the use of fossil fuels. Obama gave speech after speech against anthropomorphic global warming (AGW), but worked hard to double US fossil fuel production, a greater increase than any president I can recall. Trump says he thinks AGW is a hoax to hurt the US fossil fuel industries. Same actions, different words. Trump may or may not believe AGW is a hoax, but he wants the fossil fuel owners and workers to vote for him, and his actions match his very ill-informed, incorrect words, while Obama was obviously lying through his teeth, did more to expand the fossil fuel industry than Trump (of course, Obamabots are convinced Obama fossil fuels, when they burn, don't produce any carbon dioxide, they consume it and reduce the total carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and fight AGW).

The US president is expected to give speech after speech about spreading freedom and democracy, as Trump's predecessors did. Of course US 'freedom and democracy' means having a government that does what the US wants, while a 'totalitarian dictatorship' is any government that doesn't. And Obama started two new shooting wars--Libya and Syria--to 'spread freedom and democracy', and he also sent money and weapons in support of the anti-Russian coup in the Ukraine. Under Trump, all the wars he inherited have increased in intensity, but he hasn't started any new shooting wars. Yet. Only trade wars and sanctions against Iran and Venezuela, and he supported the coup in Bolivia.

But Trump has ordered all the troops out of Syria. Three times. The first time, they told him never to do that again, it's not on the table. The second time, his Secretary of Defence resigned in disgust. The third time, they told Trump Syria was not about spreading freedom and democracy, it was about stealing all the oil, and Trump said, 'I'm OK with that. Keep those troops there and keep that oil flowing and all the money going into US hands.' (And I heard Bashar al-Assad say Trump is the best US president he's known in his life, since all the other lied, while Trump tweets the truth.)

Net: Trump is terrible, he's still doing all the same horrible things that Reagan, both Bushes, Clinton and Obama did, but instead of reading the prepared speeches about how the US is the world leader in fighting AGW and repression and dictatorships and in spreading freedom, democracy, peace and prosperity as he should, he's getting impeached for tweeting covfefe instead.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Hank

Hank was my best friend in secondary school, and we spent a lot of time together. The summer I was 14 and Hank was 15, he was old enough to work, but no more than 4 hours a day and no more than 20 hours a week, so he took a job as busboy at the Nighthawk Steak House on Highway 79.

After he started, I didn't see him for several weeks. Finally, he called on Saturday we got together and I asked where he'd been. He said a college student had come in for lunch his first day and had told him she was doing a research paper on small town America, and asked him to help. He showed her a boarding house where she could stay, she'd pick him up every morning and take him to work, saving his mum the bother, and she'd pick him up after work and they'd explore everything there was to see about our little village and the surrounding villages, how people lived in small town America.

She'd gone home to visit her parents for the weekend, so Hank was free to see me after his shift at the Night Hawk. Hank asked me if I'd heard the nasty rumours, but Hank was always my source for rumours, I didn't know anyone else who'd share rumours with me. Hank said they were saying he was not showing the college student small town America, but only the bed in her room at the boarding house, and the rumours were completely false. I believed Hank, since he was my best friend.

That fall, Hank had to quit his job as busboy to go back to school. Every teacher asked a student to help tidy up his or her home room after school, and the chemistry teacher asked me, and the new art teacher asked Hank. Hank was quite a good artist, and was taking the advanced art class, something I avoided like the plague, having no affinity for art at all. The new teacher had just gotten her license, after the course in art and teaching art at a teacher's college and a year as a supervised teacher.

Again, Hank asked me if I'd heard the rumours, and again I said 'No,' It seems most were saying Hank was cleaning other things than the art teacher's home room. Hank said not to believe the rumours, and so I didn't.

The next year, Hank and I went out regularly into the woods where we'd build a fire and roast hot dogs. My sister asked if she could tag along, and we said, 'Sure.' I got the job of tending the fire, and Hank and my sister went to get more wood. When they came back, my sister's trousers were on inside out. She said nature had called, she'd taken off her trousers as females are wont to do, and, since it was getting dark, she'd put them on backwards. I believed her, but suggested she go put them on right side out.

***

We graduated secondary school, and after several years of going to different universities, quitting to work for awhile, and then going back to other universities, Hank and I ended up at the same university for a year, and we shared a 2 bedroom flat. Hank was between wives.

And then I saw that women queued up to have sex with Hank. One was in the bedroom being serviced, and one was waiting in the front hall watching TV with me. I was curious. 'I thought women all wanted a man who was just hers, who never looked at another woman. Yet here's Hank, with many women. What gives?'

She said, 'If I caught my husband looking at another woman, I'd divorce him the same day, but Hank is different. He's the only man in this town worth having sex with. Every woman in this town desperately needs to have sex with Hank. I couldn't go on if I didn't have Hank once a month.'

I asked, 'What makes Hank so attractive?'

'Hank? Attractive? Hank is not at all attractive. You're much more attractive than Hank. But I don't like sex with attractive men, I only like sex with Hank. The only drawback is that tonight, I have to have sex with my husband just in case I get pregnant. I hate sex with my husband, because he just doesn't have what Hank has. But I'll do it, because I have to.'

Hank and the other woman finished, she left, and the woman (who wouldn't tell me her name) went into Hank's bedroom.

It was a few weeks after that that I needed a book. I called Hank, who was in his office on campus (this was long before cell phones) and he said it was in his bedroom and I could go in and get it. So I went into Hank's bedroom for the first time and saw box after box after box filled with women's unmentionables. All different sizes, shapes, colours, materials. Some large, going from the knees to the navel, others barely covering anything, but all used, not clean ones stolen from a clothesline (a hobby with some college boys, for reasons that escape me, but Hank didn't need to steal any, he was given them in payment for his service).

I still figure Hank was telling the truth, that it wasn't the college student's bed in the boarding house, because they had a rule that, if a man was in a woman's room, she had to leave the door open. But there were lots of abandoned farms, many with abandoned beds, and the woods had lots of leaves one could gather to form a bed.

And I figure Hank and the new teacher found some place private, not her home room. I'm not sure how far my sister went with Hank, maybe just petting.

Hank got divorced. Twice. Women told him he was not attractive, so he figured all women always want sex and do it with whatever man is available, so he figured his first two wives were cheating on him. By that year we roomed in the same flat, he knew he was somehow different. He asked some of the women if I could help out, since there were so many that sex was not a pleasure for Hank, but a chore, but they all said, 'Absolutely not!'

One time, Hank said he'd had four, and was with number five, but he was tired. All the men he knew spoke of taking a woman out to an expensive restaurant and hoping for some kissing afterwards, but the women mostly said, 'We don't feel like kissing now, let's just talk.' So they talked for however long the woman figured she owed the man for the expensive dinner.

Hank asked the woman if they could just talk.

She answered, 'I have to pick up the kids from school, buy groceries, and fix dinner for my husband and the kids before he gets home. I don't have time to talk. I need great sex, and I need it NOW!'

And Hank said it was difficult, but he managed.

Hank didn't know why all the women in the village where we were going to university wanted him and no one else, and when he asked, they couldn't explain, but they had to have Hank.

I've met a very few more like Hank. One was Chris, and all the women where we worked were desperate to have sex with Chris, and no one else. But no one seems to know what it is that those men have. I figure about one man in 200 has it, whatever it is. And all the women want it, whatever it is.

The 199 men out of 200 who don't have it wish they could get it, and I've seen people offering to sell it, but Hank tried, and all the women desperate to have sex with Hank said there was no way they could possibly have sex with someone who looked like me, no matter what I said or what I did. Not even if Hank begged them because he was too tired, they just couldn't.

So, when I see the ads, 'Do this and you'll be irresistible to women. Send us $50 for the secret,' I know it wouldn't help to send them the $50. I'm still tempted, but after long talks with Hank (may he rest in peace), I know nothing is going to give me the je ne sais quoi that Hank had.

Liars

The establishment media all say Trump has told more than 12,000 lies since taking office 20 Jan 2017, while Obama always told the truth.

As usual, where they get this escapes me. Basically, Trump may have told 12,000 lies, but he's still a piker compared with Obama and the mainstream media.

Obama said one must treat Hispanics with dignity and respect, and he was only deporting those convicted of the most heinous, violent felonies. Liar, he was Deporter-in-Chief.

Trump says we must get rid of all the Hispanics and he'll do everything he can to build an impregnable wall to stop new ones coming in (not one centimeter has gotten built since Trump took office, while hundreds of kilometers got built when Obama was president) and to deport all the ones already in the US (but he's deporting at about 3/4 the rate that Obama deported Hispanics). Trump managed to convince Hispanics that, while he promised to deport them all and Clinton promised 'dignity and respect', she was lying through her teeth (she was) and would be just as anti-Hispanic as Trump, but would lie about it. They believed Trump, and sat out the 2016 election (where they'd all believed Obama and voted for him), so Trump won by paper-thin pluralities.

Likewise, global warming. Obama gave speech after speech about how important it was to fight global warming, and he was doing everything he could to stop it, while working hard to double US fossil fuel production. So Obama lied.

Trump says global warming is a hoax, and it's stupid to fight a hoax.

A simple regression says it's more than 99.999% certain that the world is getting warmer, and it's probably too late to stop the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets from falling into the ocean and raising seal levels by many meters.

But what good is it to say it's important to fight global warming if one does absolutely nothing to fight global warming?

Trump is wrong to say global warming is a hoax, but he's doing less to promote more fossil fuel production than Obama. And it's not clear if he's lying to please his base, or if he really believes it's a hoax and is just misinformed (to lie, one must know the truth and speak what one knows to be false; to repeat false information that one believes is not lying).

And still, the establishment media says Obama always told the truth, in spite of the overwhelming evidence that he seldom if ever told the truth, and that Trump always lies, when he may be too stupid to be lying.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Lesser of the Two Weevils

It is said that a cotton farmer saw two boll weevils several meters apart and running in opposite directions, so he chased after the small one, because one should always choose the lesser of two weevils.

Given that Trump ran on an isolationist platform and Secretary Clinton promised regime change in Syria and Russia on Day 1, I figured Trump was the lesser of the two weevils.

Of course, Trump has not delivered on his isolationist promise, all the wars he inherited are still going strong, and some are going stronger, but no new shooting wars, and that's a good thing.

We (might?) have come close, though.

The US 'experts' said Trump had to bomb Iran for shooting down a $100,000,000 drone, but he didn't. As usual, we have no idea what really happened. Did Trump, as he said, order a bombing run then cancelled at the last minute, or was it some minion who ordered the attack and Trump demanded they desist. We'll never know.

And now that someone has bombed a Saudi refinery, Trump has said he'll stick to sanctions, not a shooting war. Which is good. And which is soundly condemned by all the 'experts' who say he's letting Iran (how do they know it was Iran?) get away with shutting down the world's largest refinery.

The attack was on Saturday, 14 Sept 2019. The following Monday, oil was up 20%. By Friday, oil was back down to about where it was the previous Friday, after Saudi said the refinery would be back at full capacity in 48 hours (OK, it's still not back at full capacity, but Trump dumped enough oil out of the US Strategic Reserve to make up for lost Saudi production, and since they said '48 hours' surely after yet another 48 hours, it must be back up).

The Houthis said 'We done it, and we'll do it again unless Saudi stops bombing the Yemen.'

The 'experts' say Iran was responsible, and must be bombed. They say Trump's failure to start a shooting war with Iran makes the US look very weak, and this is a state that cannot be tolerated.

Iran says it does not want war, will not start a war, but if it's attacked, it will retaliate.

Saudi and the 'experts' say the US must bomb Iran to teach them a lesson they'll not soon forget.

The press says the Iranians want war, while Saudi and the US want peace, but Iran is forcing them into war. Where the press gets this, escapes me.




One must recall '88. Reagan ordered the US to shoot down an Iranian Air Force plane on 3 July, to appear as headlines on the 4th of July as a birthday present to the US. Only Iranian Air Force planes were grounded, so the US Navy shot down an Iranian passenger plane.

The US version is that the passenger plane was carrying 290 suicide bombers flying backwards to blow up a US Navy ship, and the officers and crew of the ship all got medals for defending the US against that Iranian attack (the fact that avionics means planes can't fly backwards doesn't count with Americans, who say suicide bombers can easily make a jet fly backwards). And Iran could do absolutely nothing. But Iran said, 'Never again.'

Iran wanted a nuke, but to build a nuke from scratch requires 60 tonnes of uranium, and Iran has about 6 tonnes, so they gave up in 2003 and said they did not and do not want a nuke, it's unIslamic. In April, 2018 Israel Mossad agents managed to go to the shuttered nuclear research facility and managed to bring about one tonne of paper and CDs back to Israel, and said this was proof Iran is working on a nuke and must be stopped (it wasn't and isn't proof of any such thing).

So Iran settled for a huge arsenal of ballistic missiles with conventional warheads, hidden all over Iran. The head of the Iranian-American society said, if the US attacks Iran, it must carpet bomb the entire country to destroy Iran's missiles and command and control to prevent a counterattack.

In fact, a US attack will mean Iranian missiles will hit the US fleet, the US military bases in the Middle East, and also major cities in Saudi Arabia and Israel (but not Mecca, Medina, nor Jerusalem--the Iranians are still good Muslims, even if Saudi says they're all infidels because they're not Sunni Muslims). Saddam sent a few missiles at Israel, all shot down by Israel's air defences. Iran has a much larger arsenal of missiles, and one (out of two) was able to get past the US drone's sophisticated anti-anti-drone defences. So an attack by Iranian missiles will be quite a bit more damaging than what Saddam had (and if Israel had any sense, they'd be asking the US not to bomb Iran).

So Trump is doing the right thing by saying he's imposing tough sanctions, and that's enough.

The US press are idiots for saying that makes the US look very weak and Trump must bomb Iran.

Fortunately, Trump seems to be listening to Tucker Carlson, who noted that Trump won 30 states, the critical ones by paper-thin pluralities, and some of those votes were anti-war votes that will be lost if Trump starts a new shooting war. There is no way Trump can win any of the 54% who voted against him in 2016, but if he can hold on to every one of the 46% who voted for him in 2016, he could win again in 2020. And that means no new shooting war.

So I'm hoping Trump continues to listen to Tucker Carlson, and not to the US press who are screaming he's weak and ineffective if he doesn't bomb, bomb, bomb Iran (plus, the US press wants Trump to lose, so if they can get him to bomb, and bombing costs him all his anti-war votes, so much the better--what's a fleet and a base or two if it gets rid of Trump?).

Saturday, June 29, 2019

The Heat Wave in Europe

Some wonder how in the world Paris can be 45°C (or 113°F), but there's a simple explanation.

I ran into an old Bedouin a day or two ago, and he told me how he'd been riding his camel through the desert when he saw something sticking up out of the sand. He wondered what it was, so he had his camel lie down and got off and went to find a bottle covered with writing in a language he could not read (he took a picture on his cellphone, but I couldn't read it, either, and I've never seen writing like that before, and neither had the old man).

He said he began rubbing the sand off the bottle, and somehow broke the seal, and a huge marid (a very powerful kind of jinn) came out.

'What year is this?' asked the marid, I was put in that bottle by King Shlomoh.'

'King Shlomoh?' asked the Bedouin.

'Oh,' said the marid, 'you're Arab, I think you call him King Suleiman. Unless you're a Christian Arab, in which case you'd call him King Solomon.'

'King Suleiman died more than 3,000 years ago,' said the Bedouin.

'For freeing me, I will give you one wish. Ask, and it shall be granted.'

'Well,' said the old man, 'I've heard that the weather in Europe is much nicer than it is here. I wish the weather here was like Europe.'

'That is impossible,' said the marid, 'Europe is 20 degrees of latitude north of here. It cannot be done. Ask me anything else.'

'OK,' said the old man, 'I want to understand women.'

'Your wish is granted,' said the marid, who then disappeared, never to be seen again.

And now Europe is just as hot as the Sahara.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Trump and Iran

Trump had (in his own mind, and that of all the Trumpeters) a great success with the DPRK. Trump tweeted that, if the DPRK did not surrender, he'd nuke them. Moon worked with Kim, and managed to set up a meeting of Trump and Kim. Trump announced he had solved the DPRK problem once and for all. And the Trumpeters all accept that Trump is telling the truth.

Actually, after the talk, Kim released some prisoners and returned the remains of some US soldiers killed in the Korean military action (under the US Constitution, it's not a war unless the Congress calls it a war, and they haven't done that since WWII). Kim stopped all his military tests of nukes and missiles.

So what did the US establishment press say? That Trump gave Kim the farm, and got absolutely nothing in return. And all the #NeverTrumps 'know' that, since the establishment press said it, it must be true. Trump may be a big liar, but the establishment press is an even bigger liar.

Trump got more out of Kim than any of his predecessors, and gave them absolutely nothing. The US continues its military games practising for a military regime change in the DPRK (though there was a brief delay, with some scheduled games delayed for a very short time). Trump continued all the sanctions. And the establishment press lied, 'The DPRK still has nukes. Trump's predecessors made great progress, but Trump is a complete failure.' Trump didn't care, since the Trumpeters believe him, not the establishment press. (Of course, after a year of no sanctions relief, Kim tested one missile, but no new nuclear bomb tests. For now. Still much more than any of Trump's predecessors accomplished, but the establishment press still says Trump got absolutely nothing from the DPRK.)

So he tried for a repeat with Iran.

In 1945, the US joined the UN, and signed the treaty to abide by all Security Council resolutions (didn't seem like a big deal, since the US has a veto over all Security Council resolutions it does not like). Under Obama, the Security Council passed the JCPOA, that US sanctions on Iran would be lifted if Iran stopped trying to build a nuclear weapon and allowed UN inspections.

There's a bit of history that Iran ignored. Clinton got Saddam and Kim's father to agree to get rid of all their WMD with UN inspections, promising sanctions relief. No sanctions relief at all, but Bush, Jr knew he could force regime change in Iraq and the DPRK, which was what Clinton had in mind. Bush, Jr stated in his 2003 State of the Union address that the 9/11 attacks were ordered, funded by, and planned and organised by Iran, and carried out by their co-religionists, Saddam and his Republican Guard, the Taliban led by Mullah Omar, and the DPRK led by Kim's father, and the US had already forced regime change in Afghanistan, and would also force regime change in Iran, Iraq, and the DPRK. So Kim's father, the big liar, set off a nuke, and Bush, Jr ordered the US military to force regime change in Iraq and hand Saddam over to a lynch mob. Great work on Bush, Jr's part, if one reads the US establishment media, which ranks that State of the Union address as one of the very best State of the Union addresses of all times, and they all say Bush, Jr transformed Iraq from an impoverished, brutal dictatorship and state sponsor of terror into a democratic, peaceful, and prosperous paradise. But regime change in the DPRK had to be put on hold.

Then Bush, Jr made the same deal with Muammar of Libya and Kim's father (again) and both agreed. Same result. No sanctions lifted, regime change in Libya by Obama, and Kim's father and then Kim set off more nukes, so regime change in the DPRK had to be put on hold. Again.

So Obama made the same deal with Iran (he'd given up on the DPRK), no US sanctions lifted (the US let China, India, and the EU trade with Iran, but only in cash, since the US sanctions on SWIFT were still in place, so no interbank transfers allowed). Obama's idea was that President Clinton would force regime change, once she was assured by the UN inspectors that Iran was in full compliance and had no WMD. She would have said the JCPOA was a great deal, but Iran was in violation, as revealed by US intelligence, who know much more than the UN inspectors, and the US media would have said she had no choice but to force regime change and cheered her on.

The US media hated Trump, and condemned him for saying the JCPOA was a bad deal and he was reneging.

Trump's idea was, of course, exactly the same as the DPRK: Trump would tweet that he was ready to nuke Iran, Iran would agree to a meeting, and Trump would proclaim a complete and total victory, disirregardless of whatever really happened, and all the Trumpeters would believe him, and agree he'd kept yet another of his promises, and ask themselves (yet again) why do all the #NeverTrumps hate Trump and ignore his great accomplishments?

Only Iran looked at what happened to Saddam, and Muammar, and Kim, and saw that there would be no sanctions relief, just Trump proclaiming to the Trumpeters that his meeting with Iran was a total success, and the US could move on. So Iran says they will never meet with Trump until they get some sanctions relief, and they'll shoot down anything that enters their air space or territorial waters. Trump says, if they do, he will obliterate Iran.

There is, of course, one teeny, tiny problem with obliterating Iran. In 1988, Reagan ordered the US military to sink the entire Iranian fleet and shoot down an Iranian plane. The idea was that the US Navy would shoot down some Iranian military plane, but a passenger jet was handy, so they shot it down (and gave medals to the sailors who shot it down for great shooting). Iran could do absolutely nothing. But they vowed to build up their military so, if the US ever tried that again, they could shoot back.

The US military are, of course, incredibly powerful, destructive idiots. Every day in Vietnam, they said they'd managed to kill at least 10% of the entire North Vietnamese Army. They bombed cities and villages, and killed lots of civilians, but the military were hidden. After killing 10% of the entire North Vietnamese military every day for 10 years (and seeing dozens of US soldiers killed by the entirely destroyed North Vietnamese military every day), the US pulled out.

And now they say, in 30 minutes or less, the will destroy the entire Iranian defences. Only, like the North Vietnamese and North Korean and Chinese militaries, those defences are mostly well hidden. So, after 100% have been destroyed, several thousand missiles will hit the US fleet, the US military bases in the region, Saudi Arabia, and Israel.

After that, the US military will bomb all the Iranian cities (losing a lot of planes, but they have plenty) so Iran will be destroyed, but the cost to the US will be quite a few trillion dollars, a lot of ships, planes, and military bases.

Iran, like the DPRK, won't start a war, since they know that any war with the US will destroy Iran, but they say, if the US starts to destroy Iran, they will shoot back, and the cost will be far more than the US can afford.

But the US military keep saying they can destroy Iran without losing a single American or any American assets. And they believe it. Even if Iran got extremely lucky and somehow managed to shoot down a $130,000,000 stealth-protected drone, surely, they can't possibly do it again.

So it looks like Trump plans war with Iran. Maybe.
Tucker Carlson, the best commentator in the US media, said Trump won with a coalition that includes some anti-war types who liked his promise of no new wars, and he'd lose all those voters if he starts a war with Iran (he'd still have the racists, of course).

Since Trump won in 2016 by a paper-thin margin, he can't afford to lose any of his base, so starting a new war is certain to guarantee his defeat in 2020.

So we have a slender hope that Trump will listen to Tucker Carlson and tweet lots of nukes at Iran, but no actual bullets or bombs. The Democrat running against Trump will promise war with Russia to punish them for stealing the 2016 election (as Secretary Clinton promised to do for their trying to steal the election). Every Democrat is sure Russia stole the election since Obama and Mueller said they had irrefutable proof (classified, so no patriotic American would ever ask to see it). So if Trump avoids war and can run on an anti-war platform, he might pull a repeat in 2020, something that will be impossible if he listens to Bolton and Pompeo.

It's not much hope, but it's all we have.